Verse of the Day

Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Prime Paradox of Christianity

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English defines the word PARADOX as:

Paradox - A tenet or proposition contrary to received opinion; an assertion or sentiment seemingly contradictory, or opposed to common sense; that which in appearance or terms is absurd, but yet may be true in fact.

WordNet is a lot simpler:

Paradox - a self-contradiction

There is a paradox in Christianity. It is the prime paradox of our lives here on earth.

The Bible is very clear, we are saved by faith alone, no “good” thing we do brings us salvation, for we always make more mistakes than we make perfection. Nothing we do will bring us salvation. Our eternal life is given freely to us when we follow our Lord Jesus Christ. He asks nothing for the Single Perfect Sacrifice, made One Time, for All Mankind, for All Time. Nothing. The sacrifice would not be a sacrifice if it were not freely given.

But, what about good works? Are we saved if we do no good works?

We can do all the good we want, but if we believe not in our Lord, in the Gospel of Saint John, in the Sixth Verse of the Fourteenth Chapter He tells us, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

Yet, if we “believe” and do not our best to act in accordance with His instructions, we do not believe, but merely claim to believe. In the Gospel of Saint Luke, Chapter Six, Verse Thirty-One we read Jesus’ words, “And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.” In Verse 46, He says, “And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?” Saint James counsels us to “visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, [and] to keep ourselves unspotted from the world.” Actions.

Those good works which we have the ability to perform do not save us; but they are the manifestation of our faith. You will note the title of Saint Luke’s second book is The Acts of the Apostles, not the Thoughts or Prayers or Feelings of the Apostles. God looks to us for action. Thoughts, prayers and feelings are nice, they just won’t take the place of action. Action is the name of the game!

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